Daniel Dockery

animî nostrî dêbent interdum âlûcinâri

Home of published musician, recording artist, mathematician, programmer, translator, artist, classicist, and general polymath.
Rilke, "Der Nachbar" • Daniel Dockery

Rilke, “Der Nachbar”

February 2nd, 2012

The poem, from Das Buch der Bilder:

Fremde Geige, gehst du mir nach?
In wieviel fernen Städten schon sprach
deine einsame Nacht zu meiner?
Spielen dich hunderte? Spielt dich einer?

Gibt es in allen grossen Städten
solche, die sich ohne dich
schon in den Flüssen verloren hätten?
Und warum trifft es immer mich?

Warum bin ich immer der Nachbar derer,
die dich bange zwingen zu singen
und zu sagen: Das Leben ist schwerer
als die Schwere von allen Dingen.

The translation, “The Neighbor”:

Strange violin, are you following me?
Already, in how many distant cities
has your lonely night spoken to mine?
Are hundreds playing you? Only one?

Are there such men in all great cities,
who without you would already
have lost themselves in the rivers?
And why does it always hit me?

Why am I always the neighbor
of those who anxiously force you
to sing and to say: Life is harder
than the heaviness of all things.

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Daniel Dockery

animî nostrî dêbent interdum âlûcinâri

Home of published musician, recording artist, mathematician, programmer, translator, artist, classicist, and general polymath.